Charged with a drug crime?
Criminal drug charges can be confusing. A lot of rumors, myths, and false information can be found on the internet and from friends. Don’t give up your rights or your future based on bad information, frustration, confusion, and or fear. Law enforcement officers in the state of Minnesota are committed to identifying, arrested and convicting those who are engaged in the illegal drug trade. As a result, criminal drug cases in Minnesota can become complicated very early on in the proceedings. Once criminal charges are filed in your case, demand an experienced Minneapolis drug crime defense lawyer that can represent you aggressively. The Anderson Law Firm will fight for you.
Minnesota Drug Crimes
If you have been charged with drug possession or sale in Minnesota, then you need the proper representation. Getting caught with drugs or being accused of being in possession of drugs can be a very frightening experience. If you are caught with drugs, law enforcement may seek forfeiture or any motor vehicles or money that you are in possession of at the time of arrest.
A dedicated and experienced Minnesota Drug Attorney can walk you through the legal process and put your mind at ease. You will have an understanding of what is going on and what to expect next so that thee are not any surprises.
As for how the charge is classified, the state of Minnesota states that:
- First Degree Drug Possession/Sale: A charge of First Degree Controlled substance is for anyone possessing 25 grams or more of cocaine, methamphetamine, or heroin; 100 kilograms or more of marijuana, or for anyone selling 10 grams or more of cocaine, methamphetamine, or heroin. The sentence involves up to 30 years in prison and up to $1,000,000 in fines.
- Second Degree Drug Possession/Sale: can yield up to 25 years in prison and $500,000 in fines when in possession of 6 grams or more of Cocaine, Methamphetamine, or heroin; 50 grams or more of a narcotic other than heroin, meth, or cocaine; 50 grams or more or more than 100 doses of hallucinogens or amphetamine; and 50 kilograms or more of marijuana. Additionally, a sale of 3 grams or more of cocaine, methamphetamine or heroin can also result in a Second Degree Violation of Controlled Substance.
- Third Degree Drug Possession/Sale: can yield up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines. If in possession of 3 grams or more of cocaine, methamphetamine or heroin; 10 grams or more of a narcotic other than meth, cocaine, or heroin; 50 or more doses of narcotics; 5 doses of LSD; and 10 kilograms or more of marijuana. Additionally, the sale of any amount of cocaine, methamphetamine or heroin can result in a Third Degree Violation of Controlled Substance.
- Fourth Degree Drug Possession/Sale: is a felony that can carry up to 15 years in prison and $100,000 in fines. This is the charge when caught with 10 or more dosage units of a hallucinogen. Additionally, the possession with intent to sell any amount of cocaine, methamphetamine or heroin can results in a charge of Fourth Degree Violation of Controlled Substance.
- Fifth Degree Drug Possession: is the least severe of all charges. Essentially the possession of a small amount of any controlled substance, except a small amount of marijuana, is a Fifth Degree Violation of Controlled Substance. However, the sentence can still be up to 5 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.
- Marijuana Charges: In Minnesota, the possession of a small amount of marijuana, defined as 42.5 grams or less, is a Petty Misdemeanor. A Petty Misdemeanor is a non-criminal offense carrying at most a fine of $300.00. However, pleading guilty to this crime can have lasting affects on your ability to seek employment and government benefits, even though it does not result in a criminal conviction. Possession of 1.4 grams or less in a motor vehicle is a misdemeanor, carrying a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and $1,000.00.
- Barbiturates: If caught in possession of a barbiturate, selling it, distributing it in any way, or illegally trafficking it across state lines, you could find yourself facing some rather significant drug charges. If you are driving and the law enforcement officer feels that you are under the influence of something, they can order you to have a blood or urine test to see if there is anything in your system. If so, then you can be charged with a DUI.
- Ectasy: Ecstasy is an illegal recreational drug that people will possess, sell, give away to others, and even traffic across state lines. If you or a love done has been charged with a drug crime related to ecstasy, it is important to call an attorney as soon as possible so you can defend your rights and know your options. To learn more about those options and to discuss your case, call the Anderson Law Firm, PLLC at 952-582-2904 for a free consultation.
Wisconsin Drug Crimes
Drug charges in Wisconsin range from misdemeanor offenses to felony offenses, and punishment can include jail time, prison time and treatment programs. Wisconsin drug schedules and federal drug schedules are very similar.
When the federal government categorized controlled substances into “schedules” and Wisconsin follows the same categories for drug classifications and penalties. These schedules help the courts and law enforcement categorize drugs by their risk of abuse.
Schedule I drugs include those that are the most dangerous and have a high risk of addiction or dependency and no legitimate medical use. Drugs included under this heading include LSD, marijuana, heroin, GHB, and ecstasy.
Schedule II substances still have a high risk of abuse but may have legitimate medical uses. These include things like opium, cocaine, methadone, methamphetamines, and amphetamines.
Schedule III drugs are slightly less dangerous than Schedule II substances, but still have a moderate risk of abuse. Schedule III substances include hydrocodone, codeine, anabolic steroids, testosterone, ketamine, and some depressants.
Schedule IV drugs have a slight risk of dependency and have very acceptable medical uses. Some Schedule IV drugs are clonazepam, some tranquilizers, and sedatives.
Schedule V substances have a very low risk of dependency and include things like over the counter medication with Codeine.
WI Drug Possession – Laws & Penalties
The charge and potential sentence you will face for a possession charge depends on the type of drug you were caught in possession of. For instance:
|Schedule 1 and 2 drugs not listed below||Up to 3 ½ years in prison and $10,000 in fines.|
|Cocaine First Offense||Up to 1 year in jail and $5,000 in fines.|
|Cocaine 2nd Offense||Up to 3 ½ years in prison and $10,000 in fines.|
|LSD and other hallucinogens, 1st Offense||Up to 1 year in jail and $5,000 in fines.|
|LSD and other hallucinogens, 2nd Offense||Up to 3 ½ years in prison and $10,000 in fines.|
|GHB , any offense||Up to 6 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.|
|Methamphetamines, any offense||Up to 6 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.|
|Other substances not listed||Up to 30 days in jail and $500 in fines, misdemeanor|
Wisconsin Marijuana Charges
If you have never had any drug charge or criminal legal problem, there are usually good opportunities to work out a reasonable deal. Rather than having to serve anytime in jail, you may be entitled to a conditional discharge. This simply means that you will serve probation prior to trial. If you are successful on this probationary term, the charges will be dropped.
If, however, this is not your first offense or you are not eligible for the conditional discharge, you may serve time in jail. Unlike most states, if you are charged with simple possession it doesn’t matter how much you had on you at the time.
|First offense||Misdemeanor, up to 6 months in jail and $1,000 fine.|
|Second offense||Felony, up to 3 ½ years in prison and $10,000 in fines.|
Wisconsin Marijuana Possession with Intent/ Delivery/ Manufacturing – Laws & Penalties
If you are charged with one of these more serious marijuana offenses, it does matter how much of the drug you had.
|Less than 200 grams||Up to 3 ½ years in prison and $10,000 in fines|
|200 grams- 1,000 grams||Up to 6 years in prison and $10,000 in fines|
|1,000 grams- 2,500 grams||Up to 10 years in prison and $25,000 in fines|
|2,500 grams- 10,000 grams||Up to 12 ½ years in prison and $25,000 in fines|
|10,000 grams or more||Up to 15 years in prison and $25,000 in fines|
Possession of Paraphernalia – Laws & Penalties
If you are charged with being in possession of drug paraphernalia, you could be facing additional time in jail. Typical paraphernalia found in pot possession busts includes pipes and bongs. Possession of drug paraphernalia is punishable by 30 days in jail and a fine of $500.
A conviction of simple possession, for example may receive a sentence under state law of drug treatment rather than jail time, and probation may be available to first-time offenders for even the more serious crimes.
Over the past twenty years, the declared “war on drugs” has failed to end substance abuse, but it has succeeded in punishing and imprisoning many Americans who might otherwise lead productive lives. A felony conviction, even for a minor drug offense, is a heavy burden for anyone going back into the job market. And while it is difficult to determine in advance the exact sentence an alleged drug offender faces, rarely does a defendant get off lightly without the benefit of an experienced criminal defense attorney.
Drug charges cover a broad range of offenses, from the less severe, such as simple possession of a small amount of certain drugs, to the more serious, such as participation in an ongoing drug-related criminal enterprise or manufacturing and distributing drugs. Even minor charges can be terrifying and carry the risk of serious penalties upon conviction; the more serious charges, of course, can give rise to even graver consequences.
A consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney from Anderson Law Firm will help you understand the possible and real charges and sentencing outcomes you face, what you need to do to prepare your defense against the charges, and negotiate charges downward.
Federal Drug Charges/Drug Crime Defense Lawyer in Minneapolis
The severity of the punishment for a drug crime depends on the type of substance, the quantity, the intent of possession, and local, state and federal laws. The U.S. Controlled Substances Act sets the criteria for what constitutes criminal offenses in the manufacture, possession, sale and abuse of drugs. According to state and federal laws, a Controlled Substances considered to be a drug can be (drug types and criminal acts involving them):
- Methamphetamine Drug Charges
- Prescription Drug Offenses
- Altered over-the-counter drugs
- Other illegal substances
- Sale of Narcotics
- Synthetic Drugs
If you have been charged with a drug crime or suspect that you’re under investigation in Minnesota, you should immediately get an attorney involved to prevent the charges from escalating. Kirk M. Anderson is available to discuss your case and to aggressively seek out every advantage possible to defend you, both inside and outside the courtroom.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Please contact attorney Kirk Anderson for an initial consultation.